The Regulatory Affairs Compliance Department is also involved, responsible for complying with legal requirements and approving product specifications.
Food safety has the highest priority at HOCHDORF. It motivates the Quality & Food Safety Department every day to approve products for the market that meet the necessary
legislation and specifications.
The Quality & Food Safety Team tests samples of raw materials, intermediate products and end products for relevant parameters and issues the approval of conformity. From the raw material to the finished product, each production batch is analysed for various parameters, resulting in between 5 and 200 individual analyses. The laboratory technicians issue 1,400 raw material approvals per month for milk and 200 approvals for other ingredients. In addition, 10,000 in-process controls ( IPC ) are carried out every month. Over the course of the year, HOCHDORF thus achieves a total of approximately 220,000 laboratory analyses and 120,000 IPC results.
The in-process controls are an important tool for direct process control. The production employees analyse the defined parameters of products in a fixed inspection interval. The results are recorded directly in the laboratory information and management system ( LIMS ), which means deviation messages from production are immediately visible in the laboratory. The production employees are trained in IPC analysis and the quality of the analyses is checked periodically. Examples for an IPC are the pH measurement, the rapid iron test or checks on the spoon weight.
There is stringent regulation concerning the production and marketing of food worldwide through various legislative standards, with particularly strict legal requirements for infant formula. The Regulatory Affairs & Compliance Department monitors changes in legislation, develops internal procedures in response and defines food safety measures.
Quality assurance at HOCHDORF – as old as the company itself
Quality assurance has always played an important role at HOCHDORF. In the past, analyses had to be carried out with the simplest of means and the products checked in terms of their quality.
The technology is much more complex and operates at a high level now. State-of-the-art analytical equipment allows complete ingredient analysis (fat, protein, lactose and dry matter) of milk, cream and milk powder within a few minutes. This enables food production and quality control to go hand in hand at HOCHDORF right from the start.
Header: Liane Hanisch, Food Safety Lab Technician, at work. (Photography: Brigit Willimann)
In text: Our lab in the 1920. (Image source: HOCHDORF archive)